ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court (SC) Wednesday hinted at deciding the fate of the Punjab chief secretary after a week for not implementing its order of restoring the local government (LG) system in the province.
A three-member bench headed by Chief Justice Gulzar Ahmed heard the contempt petitions filed against non-implementation of its order for restoring the local government system in Punjab.
Chief Justice Gulzar Ahmed directed the Punjab chief secretary to submit implementation report within a week and observed following that, it would be decided if he should be sent to jail. During the hearing, the chief justice asked the chief secretary as to whether he has implemented the court’s order in letter and spirit after seven months. “You seem to have come to the court for lunch or dinner,” the chief justice told the chief secretary, adding that whether the official like or dislike the decision of the court, he will have to abide by it. “You don’t even deserve to be a secretary of union council, who appointed you chief secretary,” the CJ told the official, adding that the court will send him to jail for an indefinite term.
The chief justice directed the chief secretary to submit compliance report within a week and later his fate will be decided. It is pertinent to mention that on March 25, 2021, the apex court had restored the local government system in Punjab and declared Section 3 of the Punjab Local Bodies Act 2019 as ultra vires to the Constitution.
The Punjab Local Government Act 2019 was passed by the provincial legislature in May 2019. Asad Ali Khan and others who were elected as mayors under the Punjab Local Government Act 2013 for a period of five years had challenged the Punjab Local Bodies Act 2019. Their term of office was to expire on December 26, 2021; however, they stood removed under Section 3 of the Punjab Local Bodies Act 2019.
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